Lady Bears in MVC final
bob ford/times news Pleasant Valley's Kayla Dorney (18) heads the ball away from East Stroudsburg South defender Cortney Gill.
Since Tim Hinton took over as head coach of the Pleasant Valley girls' soccer team in 2009, the Lady Bears have won back-to-back Mountain Valley Conference championships.
This Thursday they will be looking for a three-peat.
Top-seeded Pleasant Valley (15-3, 12-1) received four goals from four different players and went on to knock off fourth-seeded East Stroudsburg South in the MVC semi-finals, 4-0. The Bears have been getting goals from a number of players all season long and that trend continued Tuesday evening.
"I think we played a very complete game today," said Hinton. "All year we have been getting goals from six or seven different people - which is nice. The other teams can't key in on any certain player and we did a great job of passing. Our combinations were working well tonight and everybody seemed to be in a flow."
Senior Kayla Dorney got the Bears on the board at the 20:39 mark of the first half off of a nice pass from Kristin Hart. Hart set up for a direct kick from roughly 35 yards out and sent the ball flying to the front of the net. Dorney came sailing in, headed the ball out of the air and sent it into the back of the net for the game's first goal.
Dianna Connor would give Pleasant Valley a 2-0 lead heading into the break when she scored roughly eight minutes before halftime. Connor corralled a loose ball on the left side of the Cavaliers' net and shot low to the near corner to beat South goalie Mariette Martinez for the score.
The Bears added two more goals early in the second half to put the game away. Emily Schlogl got past the Cavalier defense and beat the goalie for the team's third goal. Under a minute later Maggie Patterson scored off of a cross from Katie Forte. Forte carried the ball down the right sideline and crossed it to the front of the net where Patterson deflected it home.
Pleasant Valley goalie Sarah Elmontacir picked up her 12th shutout of the season, but only had to make one save in the process. That has been the case for most of the year, as the Bears' defense of Hart, Kelly Roden, Brenna Courtright, Olivia Cote and Kayla Kishbaugh have done a great job of stopping opposing penetration.
"Sarah is a great keeper, but Kristin is my safety net," Hinton said. "I am very confident in her abilities back there. She plays the angles well. She has tons of speed to make up for any mistakes.
"Our defense all around is solid. Not just Kristin. We have Kelly, Brenna, Liv, Kishbaugh and our subs. They are all solid. When you don't give up a lot of shots it is easy to post shutouts."
After winning five straight MVC championships from 2003 to 2008, Pleasant Valley's reign was cut short by Stroudsburg in 2008. That is when Hinton took over and led the Bears to consecutive conference titles in 2009 and 2010.
The two teams will face off yet again on Thursday at East Stroudsburg South at 7 p.m. when Pleasant Valley takes on the third-seeded Mounties. The Bears took both regular-season meetings, winning 1-0 and 2-1.
"If we can play like we did tonight where we play a complete game and control the ball then we feel very confident," said Hinton. "We know Stroudsburg is going to bring everything it has and it is going to be a battle. But we will see what happens Thursday."